Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Chikuwa Teriyaki Donburi

I cannot deny my donburi love. Donburi isn't a dish, it's a concept. Anything poured or placed over rice in a deep bowl becomes a donburi. Of course, there are classics like una-tama don, egg eel bowl, and katsu karē don, curry cutlet bowl, but I will cook up just about anything, plop it on top of a rice bowl, and serve it.

Donburi have even invaded the United States, and most people have enjoyed donburi without even realizing it. Flame Broiler's beef and chicken bowls are prime examples of delicious fast food donburis.

The star players of easy teriyaki
Yoshinoya, another donburi restaurant here, has been around since 1899! They are most famous for their beef bowl, called gyūdon. Their motto "tasty, low-priced, and quick" embodies what I love most about donburi.

This donburi may not be the most famous, but it is pretty tasty and a good basis to work your own donburi magic. The liquids reduce down to a classic teriyaki, so the chikuwa can be replaced with beef or chicken for a different teriyaki bowl.

Chikuwa and Satsuma age
Chikuwa is a fish paste cake shaped into a tube and then boiled or baked. While this sounds weird, think of it like fancy imitation crab, which is made from the same surimi (fish paste). Another variation of surimi, satsuma age is another fried surimi cake that is usually disc shaped and denser in texture.

Chikuwa Teriyaki Donburi

2 pieces of chikuwa
3 pieces of satsuma age
1/2 tbs vegetable oil
1/2 cup water
3 tbs shoyu
1 tbs mirin
1 tbs sugar
1 tbs sake
roasted sesame seeds
2-3 cups cooked hot rice

the teriyaki glaze will reduce
Cut the chikuwa into roughly 1/4" rings, on a diagonal for better presentation. Cut the satsuma age in half, then into 1/4" strips. Fry over medium heat with the oil until browned on the edges. Pour in the liquid ingredients and the sugar, and stir thoroughly over medium high heat. It will look like a lot of liquid, but don't worry, it will reduce down. Cook for about 4 minutes, stirring constantly, until the sauce has reduced and covers the chikuwa and satsuma age like a glaze. Divide the rice into two bowls. Place the fish cakes over the rice, and pour the remaining sauce over it. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve. Serves 2.

I should have taken a better picture of the finished dish, but I was too hungry!

See Also:
Tsukemono and Furikake Donburi
Una-Tama Donburi


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